+1 941-404-8909
2075 Main Street #38 Sarasota, Florida 34237

Leading Criminal Defense Law Firm in Florida

Whether you are being investigated by law enforcement, have been arrested, or have been charged with a crime, you’re probably feeling frustrated — and possibly overwhelmed — by the process.  This is a perfectly natural response. Criminal litigation is inherently high-stakes, given the penalties that could be imposed on you if the jury finds you guilty.

Money, reputation, freedom.  It’s all on the line.

And we’re here to help.

Fowler Law Group is a leading Florida criminal defense law firm, with two offices in the state of Florida (Sarasota, Bradenton).  We have decades of combined experience and provide assistance to clients who are in need of a strong legal advocate.  Simply put, we understand how to effectively navigate the criminal litigation system and secure a favorable outcome — we pursue that outcome relentlessly, whether through a negotiated agreement with the prosecution or through courtroom litigation.

We handle a range of cases, including:

    • DUI
    • Traffic Crimes
    • Drug Crimes
    • Battery (Domestic)
    • Theft Crimes
    • Probation Violations
    • Juvenile Crimes
    • Sex Crimes
    • Sealing and Expunging Records
    • And More

As you explore your options, it’s important to understand the value of a skilled attorney.  In the criminal defense context, your attorney will:

    • Investigate the facts (i.e., identifying and interviewing witnesses, collecting evidence, and working with relevant experts)
    • Negotiate with the prosecution (i.e., pushing for dismissal or a favorable plea agreement, arguing for reduced charges)
    • Litigate the case in the courtroom setting (including relevant hearings)

Throughout these processes, your attorney is a trusted advocate who will take positions that advance your best interests.  To this end, it’s important to engage closely with your attorney from the beginning so as to ensure that they have the information they need to do their job correctly.  Here at Fowler Law Group, we pride ourselves on our commitment to forming close working relationships with clients, as it gives us great insight into the underlying case — insight that we can use to secure a positive outcome.  It is this commitment that truly separates our Florida criminal defense law firm from the competition.

What Should You Do After Being Arrested in Florida?

If you’ve been arrested, it’s important to exercise caution.  Secure your rights and avoid creating additional problems that could undermine your defense.


Avoid Resisting

When you’ve been arrested, you must think strategically.

Even if your arrest was illegal (e.g. the law enforcement officer did not have probable cause to believe that you committed a felony), try to remain calm and avoid resisting.  Those who are being arrested do not generally have the right to resist.

If you do resist, you could be physically hurt in the ensuing altercation.  The prosecution will almost certainly charge you with resisting arrest and possibly battery of an officer.  This will reduce your leverage in getting the prosecution to drop their charges (or negotiating a plea deal with prosecution).

Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent

You have a right to remain silent under the constitution of the United States — so use it!

Exercise your Fifth Amendment rights and do not incriminate yourself by talking freely with law enforcement officers.  You should only give information once you have a qualified criminal defense attorney by your side to help you navigate the situation.

In some cases, law enforcement officers will attempt to get you to sign a waiver of your right to remain silent.  Do not be fooled into signing this waiver. Always obtain legal assistance before making a decision that could impact your case.

Secure Legal Assistance from a Criminal Law Firm with a Strong Reputation 

You have the right to legal counsel and cannot be prevented from contacting an attorney for help.  Make sure to secure legal assistance as soon as possible.

Common Defenses That Could Win the Case

There are a variety of defenses that can be used to avoid liability.  Below are some of the more common ones.

No Criminal Intent

Criminal intent is a necessary element to most criminal offenses.  If you can prove that you did not intend to do the unlawful act (i.e., you were swinging a bat to hit a baseball, not to hit a nearby pedestrian), then you can avoid liability.

Other intent-related defenses include “mistake” and “consent.”  For example, if the victim of theft is actually your neighbor, and they consented to you borrowing an item of their property, then there is no criminal intent.


For violent crimes, self-defense is a common argument against liability, and in Florida, a particularly strong one.  Under Florida law, you are justified in using non-deadly force if you believe it’s necessary to defense yourself against the imminent use of force, so long as your belief is reasonable.  With respect to using deadly force, you are justified if you believe it’s necessary to defend yourself or others from a forcible felony or great bodily harm/imminent death. Importantly, the law does not impose a duty to retreat.


Duress can excuse a crime and help you avoid liability.  The court will find “duress” if you were threatened with imminent death or serious bodily injury, and if there was a reasonable fear that the threat would be carried out.  You must also be able to prove that there was no alternative to committing the crime.

For example, if a criminal jumps into the passenger seat of your car and points a gun at your head, forcing you to drive away from police, then you would ostensibly be under “duress” and therefore would not face criminal charges for offenses committed while being threatened.

Contact Fowler Law Group to Secure the Help You Need

Ready to speak to an experienced defense attorney about your case?

Call us at 941-404-8919 or submit an online case evaluation form to schedule a free and confidential consultation with an attorney at our Florida criminal defense law firm today.

At Fowler Law Group, our team has a unique legal background that can be brought to bear in service of the client.  In the past, Lead Attorney James A. Fowler Jr. — founder of Fowler Law Group — worked as an assistant state attorney in Sarasota and Manatee counties.  Having handled criminal litigation on both sides (prosecution and defense), James understands prosecutors at a deeper level than most other criminal defense attorneys.  He knows their strategic weaknesses and how best to exploit them for the benefit of the client.

Contact Us Today!

Practice Areas

Our Team

What To Expect When Hiring Our Office


Fowler Law Group proudly represents the citizens of Sarasota and Manatee Counties as well as the surrounding Tampa Bay area. Our experienced team will help guide you through the judicial process and answer all of your questions with honesty and integrity. We understand the important nature of your call, and we will strive to return all calls within 24 hours. Contact us today by completing our online form or calling us at 941-404-8909.